Thursday, May 22, 2008


What do you do on Mother's Day when your dad is at church all day
and your mom doesn't feel good?

Dress up. Of course.

The dress up is not the tricky part. It's the choice of characters that is complicated.

If you choose an hogre and his mighty steed Donkey, you make a statement.

The statement is:
" I choose to be in the bath scrubbing this marker off of my face for the rest of the evening."
We don't need princesses in this family. We are all about originality. (and scrubbing of course)


Here are the family photos from our Atlanta trip.
Unless you are family, you don't have to scroll down.

I know none of you care that much, and it doesn't offend me.
I wouldn't care about your family photos either.

But, you may care about the title of the post: belonging.

I am so proud to belong to such a wonderful family.
I don't know if they really claim me behind my back,
but I feel like I belong.

And, I love LeGrand's family, with all their quirks and all.
(Isn't that what marriage is about, embracing your in-laws quirks, like you do your own family's?)

Anyhow, we had a little bit of a family dilemma for this photo shoot. Should we include Logan's girlfriend Jillian or not? She's not "officially" part of the family yet.

(Side note: I am cracking up right now. Logan and Jill had a little joke this past weekend. Whenever they would put words in "quotes" it was code talk for "we were really making out" - You know..."We were watching a movie", "we went for a walk" get it) S

o, when she is "officially" part of the family, do we all have to make out with her or should we just take the quotes out from around that word now?

We decided to take photos with and without her. You can never be too safe. Jillian took the news like a champ. It didn't seem to bother her. Maybe she doesn't want to "belong" with the rest of us crazies? Logan was a little upset. I think he really wants her to "belong". (And, if you put it in quotes, then he really really wants her to "belong", if you know what I mean?)

Only time will tell who belongs and not. (Golly, for all I know, they could kick me out of the family any minute, like after reading this post) We all really like Jillian. We hope she will belong forever. But, just in case she doesn't, we will have the photo we took without her. And, it will make for a funny memory, no matter what happens in the future.

Anyhow, with all the family discussion on whether or not we should include Jill, it got me thinking. What does it mean to belong?I think that every family should take pictures without a member of it from time to time, just to remind them of how important each individual is to the family. Belonging is a wonderful thing. Belonging in a family is the perfection of God's plan.

See how Logan is looking a little mad without his main squeeze?

We unintentionally left Jill out of our girl picture too. Don't we look so much better with her?

HulaHoop Fun

Ever since field day, Abigail has been obsessed wtih learning to hula hoop.
And, in typical Abigail fashion...she mastered it in a week.
Here is Abigail at the rest stop.
She's got her two favorite birthday presents:
her birthday dress and her birthday hula hoop.

Abigail came home from school on Monday and surprised us with her news.

She had signed up for the impromptu 3rd grade talent show.

She would be doing the hula hoop.

Overnight, she taught herself to hulahoop around her neck down to her waist.

She taught herself to turn around while hula hooping and to do some jumping tricks.

She reported that she was a big hit yesterday.

She hula hooped to Alvin and the Chipmunks.

Appropriate for the lyrics, don't you think?

"Me, I want a hula hoop."

The Rest of Tennessee

During this past weekend, several of my in-laws took
the opportunity to tell me that
they think that I knock on the State of Tennessee too often.

And, they don't appreciate it.
I guess they think that I never say anything good
about their beloved home state on my blog.

I thought that I would try to regain my grace in their presence.

I love Tennessee.

Trust me, if I didn't love it here,
I think I could make my husband miserable enough to take me back where I came from.
There are a lot of other women who have done just that.

Sure, I know I show a lot of the quirky sides of Tennessee,
and natives don't always appreciate it.

But it's not because I want to demean people
or show the state in a negative light.
But, I do it because it's funny.
I would do the same thing if I lived in Utah or California.
Two words: hippies and polygamists.
But, just because I would show the extremes
it wouldn't mean that the rest of the state wasn't somehow lovely.
So, I am repenting, and asking for forgiveness. (I am really good at this)
I have made a goal to show you all the REST of the State of Tennessee.
(not just the bad parts)
I thought it no better than to start with one really nice feature of the South.

The rest stops.
(or Rest Areas as they are officially called)

Seriously, you have never seen such deluxe rest stops, unless you have visited.
They are SO nice.

People actually plan their trips around which rest stop that would like to visit.

I am still trying to adjust to the notion.
You just don't go to rest stops out West.

The only people that visit rest stops in the West are, well, the likes of polygamists and hippies.
In the rest of this country, rest stops are scary.

They are not a place you want to visit, much less, use their bathroom, especially with children.

So, if you are a Western transplant and you join the family for a picnic at a rest stop,

even if it is the Sabbath, and you are avoiding eating out, you feel dirty somehow.

Downright shameful.

So shameful that you just try to go unnoticed by snapping photos from the background.

Look, Michelle loved enjoying lunch at the rest stop on Sunday.

And, do you know what?

When you leave a Tennessee rest area, you actually feel rested.
And the rest that you get in a slower paced state like Tennessee is priceless.

And, it is the perfect place for a Western transplant to live.

P.S. In my defense, when just searching,

I found way more good posts about Tennessee than bad ones.

I think TN Natives can be a little sensitive and defensive at times.

But, that's not an insult, just an observation.

And, I would like to say, in my defense,

that I know Californians and Utahans can be defensive too.

Supporting American Economy

Thanks to Valerie for a great e-mail forward.
If only my tax stimulus check didn't have to be used for all of the necessary things listed.

As you may have heard, the Administration said each of us would
get a rebate check to stimulate the economy.

If we spend that money at Wal-Mart, all the money will go to China.

If we spend it on gasoline it will go to the Arabs.

If we purchase a computer it will go to India.

If we purchase fruit and vegetables it will go to Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala.

If we purchase a good car it will go to Japan.

If we purchase useless junk it will go to Taiwan... ...and none of it will help the American economy.

We need to keep that money here in America.

The only way to keep that money here at home is to spend it at garage sales;
since those are the only businesses still in the U.S

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Define it. Any way you want,
but no matter how hard I have tried,
elegant and junk just don't go together.

Just like LG and my camera at times.

And, yes, my yard is more elegant than my house.
And I am proud of it.

There is nothing like looking outdoors for some of God's beauty.
You know I didn't find it IN the house during this photo shoot.

And, if you can't make your yard as elegant as you would like.

Buy your first piece of art, ever.

It will give you your dream scenery, and your hubby will love it,

especially if it was $20 at Big Lots.

Fancy Nancy

A while back, the girls had a walkathon at school.

Because their grammy was generous,
they each got to buy a book for their school library.

They put Grammy's name inside of the books.

They brought the books home for us to see.

Here is the book that Sophia picked out.

We instantly fell in love with it, and I've been meaning to blog about it.

I hadn't gotten around to it,

so you can imagine my delight with Mia's last post.

Now all I have to do is link.

Abigail has been trying to recreate her own version of Fancy Nancy.

Isn't she so fancy?


Years ago, LG got to the third round of interviews with the FBI.

I was secretly happy when he didn't get the job.
(You can't blame a woman for wanting her man to be safe.)

LG wanted the job mainly for the title. How James Bond it is.

And, there is nothing cooler than packing a gun for a living, right?

I guess we have another adventurous one in the family.

She wants the title.

And, take notice, I've taught her to not let anyone push her around.

At the bottom of her handmade work badge,

it says it all with her self-proclaimed title:




Life Observers

and Friends.

My sweet Sophia is a little monkey.

Hey, mom, don't take my picture.
But, please watch me climb,
and I'll pretend you aren't using that camera that I pretend to hate.

Don't mind me, I'm concentrating.
I need to hang upside down. I have to hang upside down.
Oh no! (Mom panics, and misses a few shots.)

Oh, mom, what are you worrying about? You taught me to be tough.

I could do this all day, and I think she could too.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

If every day were field day

If every day were field day,
we could sit outside and smile at each other.
Everyone would love themselves and wear fancy hats.

We could pop balloons with our butts just for fun.

We could let out all of our frustrations by pulling on eight kids on the end of a very large rope.

Everyone would get some kine of award, and be very happy and proud of their hard work.

Our teachers would cut us a break when they had to replace the paper that they told us to be very careful with. They would forget that they told us to place it in a very important place instead of losing it out of our pocket on the playground.

Even though they said they would not reproduce our list of events, they would.


Because it is field day, and no one can go home disappointed, even if they tend to misplace things because they are too busy thinking about more important things.

(The little genius Abigail is just like her father. He needs a field day every day too so that when he loses that fourth wedding band [which is not a matter of IF but WHEN], I, too, will cut him a break.)

We could just hug our friends.

We would not just cheer on our classmates but the opponents from the "other side" also.

And, we could run just for fun.

(Man, I really need an adult version of a field day.

I haven't run for fun in approximately 15 years)

And, last but not least, if we could have a field day every day,

everyone would take a moment to enjoy the vastness of the sky.

And, like me, they would know God is up there somewhere.

And they would know that he's watching over all of his children.

And on field day, everyone would be happy because God would be happy.


Because his children are all getting along, enjoying each other and encouraging each other.

And that is the most important reason that even if every day isn't field day,

we should act like it is.

And, if you can't be nice like it's field day...

...go and pop a balloon with your butt.

It will put you in the mood.